Hundreds of thousands were still without power after a freak October storm slammed the tri-state with heavy snow and wind that snapped tree branches, downing power lines and forcing dozens of schools to cancel Monday classes.
West Milford, N.J. reported 19 inches of snow, New York's Orange County had 16 inches in Harriman and New York City had 6 inches in the Bronx and 2 in south Brooklyn, according to the National Weather Service. Armonk in Westchester had 12.5, while Milbrook in Dutchess County saw 21 inches.
About 2.9 inches fell in Central Park, shattering previous October snow records, both for the entire month and daily snowfall. An inch has never been recorded in October; the last two times measurable snow fell there was 1952 with half an inch, and in 1925 with eight-tenths of an inch.
"I think Mother Nature played a trick on us," Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at a news conference Sunday afternoon, on the eve of Halloween.
Fallen trees, power outages and blocked roads were the main post-storm problems and points of focus for crews across the state, the governor said.
Cuomo declared a state of emergency for 13 counties in New York, including Orange, Putnam, Sullivan, Ulster, Richmond, and Westchester counties. Staten Island -- Richmond County -- was the only borough in New York City to be declared in a state of emergency by Cuomo.
New York City parks were re-opened by noon Sunday, but officials advised New Yorkers to be cautious because heavy snow was still weighing down tree limbs. Crews are continuing to work citywide to address tree damage.
Nearly 1,000 trees in Central Park were lost in the storm, according to the Central Park Conservancy.
Subway riders were warned to expect disruptions and delays, especially on the 6 line, while Metro-North trains were also having problems Sunday, particularly on the Upper Harlem line north of the Southeast station. Dozens of trees are blocking parts of the track there, and a couple hundred feet of the third rail were crushed, spokeswoman Marjorie Anders told NBC New York.
Service isexpected to be restored on the Upper Harlem line between Southeast and North White Plains for Monday morning. Bus service will be provided for the Wassaic branch.
Passengers on a Harlem line Metro-North train out of Wassaic in Dutchess County were stuck for hours after they boarded sometime in the 4 p.m. hour Saturday, when trees on the tracks near Brewster blocked the train, according to a Metro-North official. The approximately 55 passengers were finally able to get off the train at about 2 a.m., when they were retrieved by State Police, MTA police and the local Brewster fire department.
Around the state, more than 200,000 customers were without power, most in the hard-hit Hudson Valley region of the state. Consolidated Edison reported almost 71,000 customers were without power in Westchester County, with the vast majority expected to be restored by late Wednesday. The hardest-hit communities include Yonkers, Cortlandt, Greenburgh, New Castle, Mount Pleasant, and Yorktown.
Shelters are open in Bedford at the Bedford Community Center, in Yorktown at Copper Beach Middle School and in Croton at the Municipal Building at 1 Van Wyck Street. Find out more at westchestergov.com
Con Ed says it has about 6,500 customers without power in the Bronx and Staten Island, and expects its New York City customers to be restored by late Monday.
In the Hudson Valley, state police evacuated motorists from numerous vehicles stuck on Interstate 84 and the Taconic Parkway overnight and took them to hotels. Police said about 50 to 75 vehicles were towed away so the highways could be plowed, and owners were being reunited with them Sunday afternoon.
Gov. Chris Christie declared a state of emergency Saturday evening.
He is among more than 604,000 utility customers across New Jersey who lost power.
On Sunday, New Jersey Central Power and Electric reported about 254,000 customers without power, mostly in northern New Jersey.
Public Service Electric and Gas Company said about 268,000 of its customers were in the dark, mostly in Bergen, Essex, Middlesex, Passaic and Union counties. Beyond its line crews, PSE&G has arranged for 60 crews from Alabama, Georgia and Mississippi to work on the project, it said.
PSE&G warned Saturday night that power might not be fully restored until Wednesday because of the number of damaged trees and downed power lines.
Among those operating without power was Bergen Regional Medical Center in New Jersey, which was using a generator. A spokesperson for the hospital said daily operations have not been affected.
Teaneck, N.J., was hardest hit by outages: 80 percent of PSE&G homes were still in the dark Sunday morning, with the police station running on a generator.
NJ Transit service will remain suspended on the Morris and Essex lines through Monday due to downed trees and overhead wires.
Montclair Rail Service remains suspended.
More than 800,000 customers were in the dark across the state, shattering the record for a single event that was set when the remnants of Hurricane Irene hit in August.
Gov. Malloy said Sunday morning that some could be without power for up to a week.